When it comes to burning calories, it’s a fairly simple equation.
What goes in must be burned off, or it sticks to our ribs. Acquiring weight is absurdly easy — eating just 100 extra calories a day (100 more than what your body burns) will lead to a nine- to ten-pound weight gain over the course of a year, experts say.
How much is 100 calories? Not a lot: A can of Coke contains 155 calories, a chocolate bar more than 200. Of course, that cola or chocolate chip cookie is no problem if we’re walking or running it off.
But after 40, our activity level tends to decline, too. So the challenge is to bring the two into balance.
Look back over the past year, and think about when your weight seemed to be holding steady and when it seemed to be trending slowly upward.
What were you doing during the good weeks? What sabotaged you the other times? Make a list of what works for you, and what throws you off. Your own healthy habits in the past are the ones most likely to work for you now.
2. Eliminate underlying metabolic conditions.
Would it surprise you to know that thyroid problems strike as many as one out of five adults over age 40?
The most common of these is hypothyroidism — an underactive thyroid — and hypothyroidism is one of the primary reasons many people over 40 can’t lose weight.